During training camp, an ugly contract shaped cloud hovered over forward Brayden Schenn and his teammate Alex Pietrangelo. Both players said that negotiations wouldn’t be a distraction for the season, and that they wanted to work something out as soon as possible, and so on and so forth.
Turns out, Schenn was right. There won’t be any distractions this season because Doug Armstrong just locked him into a deal. Schenn signed an eight-year, $52 million contract deal. He got a tidy raise, from a cap hit of $5,125,000 a season to a very reasonable cap hit of $6,500,000.
Could he’ve gotten more on the free agent market? Probably. A recent Cup champion and a key cog in the success of the Blues? He could’ve raked it in, but those same factors weighed in the Blues’ favor as well. Why leave somewhere that you’ve been successful, where you’ve won a championship, to make a little bit more?
It’s easy to assume that players will go wherever the cash will lead them, and you can’t blame them for that. There’s very little loyalty when it comes to careers - they have to take care of themselves, their families, and their future. But once in a while you get a contract that reminds you that it isn’t always going to all be about business.
The Pietrangelo contract remains. Jay Bouwmeester’s contract more than likely will come off the books at the end of this season, which adds $3,250,000 to what the team can work with, though Vince Dunn will be seeking an RFA raise as well, and so will Blais and Fabbri.
Doug Armstrong’s been on a roll as a miracle worker. Let’s see if he has one more in him.